Focused on Diversity

October 29, 2021

Welcome back to the Alliance, everyone! We're starting off this edition with several big updates from current and former NewStart fellows, so let's get right to it!

On Thursday, current NewStart fellow Larry Graham officially launched his new nonprofit organization called Diversity Pledge Institute (DPI), which is dedicated to the advancement of diversity in journalism.

If you've ever been to a newspaper-focused journalism conference, or looked at the staffs of most local newspapers, it is clear there is a true lack of diversity within our industry, and because of that most outlets have tremendous problems reaching diverse audiences. Larry and DPI have a vision to change that, and that change can't come soon enough.

DPI provides media organizations with a bespoke service that improves recruitment, retention and advancement of employees from diverse backgrounds, with a goal of increasing profitability, employee satisfaction and audience growth. It also offers a free mentorship, training and advancement program for journalists, with an emphasis on journalists of color and members of the LGBTQ community. By providing hands-on training and coaching on career advancement at all levels, DPI is helping journalists find jobs, get promoted, become leaders and navigate newsroom politics.

“At DPI, we want to address the diversity pipeline issue from both the organizational and individual perspectives,” Larry said while announcing the new initiative. "We believe diversity makes journalism stronger.”


Larry has achieved an incredible amount in just a short period of time, and he's not slowing down. There will be much more to come in the near future from DPI, so feel free to follow along on Twitter @dpiDiversity and check out the website at You can read more about yesterday's launch on Editor & Publisher's website.

Congrats, Larry!

Lighting the Way

In August, graduated NewStart fellow Becky Pallack introduced you to her new venture -- an ambitious nonprofit civic news organization for all of Arizona.

Well, a week ago we learned the name of that new organization -- Arizona Luminaria. Becky and her co-founder, Irene McKisson, also unveiled their new website,, which includes information on how people can support this new venture by becoming a founding member.

And for those of you who are into mission statements and the like, the site includes that, too:

That message seems to be working. as people are already backing the new venture:

If you would like to become a founding member, head over to Becky and Irene would appreciate your support.